When Jess first told me that she was pregnant, my reaction wasn’t much to be desired. I just went quiet, to the point where she had to ask me to say something. I truly was over joyed, but I couldn’t help a wave of other thoughts and emotions come over me.
The news shouldn’t have come as a shock to me. We were married, and it’s not like we weren’t trying. I just wasn’t expecting it so quick, I expected to have chance to get some things in order first.
At the time, I had the only income, so immediately that was my first concern. How will we afford to look after her? Prepare for her arrival? Keep up with the ever growing need for bigger clothes?
And then there was the “what will people think?” stage. I don’t even know why this crossed my mind. We were married, we weren’t too young, and we had been in a relationship for 10 years. But I still worried that people were going to be disappointed.
And finally, I had the “am I even ready?” stage. This one’s a tough one, and I feel that this one is what gets people the most. Was I going to be a good Father? Do I have any skills or heirlooms or assets to teach my kid? It really rattles around your brain, and I can see how it can make people anxious or even depressed.
It turns out, however, that I needn’t have worried about any of that.
Money? I can always earn more money through over time and working away. I have the most amazing parents and in-laws who would always help us out if we ever needed it. We had just got married so we also had some cash gifts we could dig in to. But even if I wasn’t fortunate enough to have those, support is out there.
Opinions? First of all, who cares? As long as you’re happy, which I was, then nothing anyone says can bring you down. You know what’s right for you, and only you. But luckily, everyone was very happy with the news, (as you will see in a future blog) and everyone was very supportive. Even during a pandemic, we never felt alone. People constantly offered us support and asked if we needed anything. This was particularly appreciated when I was working away, leaving Jess to struggle alone.
And ready? What even is ready? How do you know when you’re ready? Who is ever ready for their first child? The thing is, you can do all the preparation in the world. Read all the books, go to all the classes, but the truth is, come delivery day, all that goes out the window and you just figure it out. Babies are a lot more robust than you might think. As long as you are of sound mind, looking after a baby will come naturally. I’m not saying it will be easy. You will still be tired and protective, but you will be a great Father. So just look after yourself.
I was already overjoyed at the news, but when I realised all of that, I could really start to feel excited and ecstatic. I was going to be a Dad!